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Old 04-09-2010, 08:18 AM   #1
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Default Pittsburgh Steelers draft digest: team takes second look at Texas safety Earl Thomas

Pittsburgh Steelers draft digest: team takes second look at Texas safety Earl Thomas
April 9, 5:17 AMPittsburgh Sports Examiner
Matt Pawlikowski

PITTSBURGH - As reported yesterday, the Steelers had a private workout with Florida center Maurkice Pouncy on Thursday at the UPMC facility. The team also brought in Idaho guard Mike Iupati.

Today they are bringing in another big name, as Texas safety Earl Thomas will be in Pittsburgh.

Director of Football operations Kevin Colbert who does not attend many Pro Day's and Hall of Famer Mean Joe Greene met with Thomas during Texas' Pro Day, so this is the second time the Steelers will be taking a hard look at the hard hitting safety.

A league source says that Thomas, who did not participate in position drills will go through them with team officials in addition to interviews, which will include Steeler coach Mike Tomlin, according to the source.

Thomas, who played just two years recorded 135 tackles, 10 interceptions, 21 passes defended, and five forced fumbles during his career at Texas.

Last year was by far his best season as he grabbed eight interceptions, returning two for touchdowns. Although he has played safety, he is being looked at as a possible cornerback on the NFL level too.

Thomas is a rare player, and Tim Griffen of ESPN has a story about this. Griffin goes so far to say that had he not declared early for the NFL draft, he would have been the greatest defensive player in school history.

THE 4-1-1 on Thomas:

Earl Thomas, DB Texas (projection and position rank from nfldraftscout.com)

* 5-10, 195 lbs.
* 40 yard dash (4.45)
* Date of birth: May 7, 1989
* Projected draft round (1).
* Position rank: Take your pick. He's either the No. 3 cornerback or the No. 2 or 3 free safety in the draft depending on whose rankings you read.
* 2009 Jim Thorpe Award finalist (nation's best collegiate defensive back)
* 2009 First-team All-America selection

In other related team news, the Steelers announced they have re-signed defensive tackle Nick Eason.
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